An investigation into the use of Advanced Placement (AP) funds by officials at Chiles High School found that $10,000 of the funds were used to supplement the salary of the Chiles football coach.
While noting that school officials have broad discretion how to use the funds, the investigative report described the situation with the Chiles High School football coach as particularly concerning.
AP funds are awarded to high schools for each student in each advanced placement course who receives a score of 3 or higher on the College Board Advanced Placement Examination.
The policies in place require each school district to allocate at least 80 percent of the funds for advanced placement instruction.
Chiles High School received $449,238 in AP funds in 2020-21 and evidence shows that approximately $107,777 of this money was used to fund extra duty hourly positions unrelated to AP activities.
The report indicates that Mr. Burgess and others confirm the circumstances by which $10,000 in additional annual compensation was provided to the Chiles High School football coach, Kevin Pettis.
Mr. Pettis interviewed for the position in 2014 and informed Burgess he could not afford to take a pay-cut if he accepted the job. Burgess asked Pettis to bring in his last paycheck so he could compare the difference. Although the exact difference between the pay is unknown, the report indicated it was about a $1,500/month gap ($15,000 over ten months).
Chiles officials admit that the additional compensation provided to Pettis was intended to help bridge this compensation gap. Burgess and the parties involved also told investigators that the money was not simply “free” and that additional work was required.
The reported noted that if the additional duties were performed under such an agreement, the compensation was potentially proper.
But as with other employees hired with AP funds, Chiles High School officials did not track or submit his hours.
However, unlike with other employees, the report found that Pettis was not assigned specific extra duties. Rather, it appears that Coach Pettis was free to select, at his own discretion, any possible extra-duty as he saw fit.
During the year, Petitis claims he performed such tasks as:
- Cleaning, sweeping and maintaining the $1.4M multipurpose field (used for boy’s soccer, girl’s soccer, lacrosse, flag-football, band, drill team, Special Olympics, and PE programs, and various outside programs) (a 1.5/hr. job claims he performed 134 times between August 2020 and June 2021).
- Providing coverage for athletic sporting events of all types (basketball,
baseball, softball, volleyball, wrestling, flag-football, middle school football,
etc.) that occurred on CHS campus (51 events of between 2.5 and 6 hours
- Maintaining the “outside of the weight room year-round” including “keeping the weeds under control” and “trimming bushes and putting down mulch” at his own expense.
- Opening the weight room for use by all athletes (not just his students) both before and after school.
- Moving the COVID-19 disinfectant “fogger” between locker rooms and weight rooms.
- Providing extra coverage for any other event requested by the administration as needed.
- Being on the “on call” list with the Leon County Sheriff’s Office when trespassers are found on the football field.
The report indicated it was not clear whether many of these duties are truly distinct from positions that Pettis was already being compensated to complete.
For example, while Pettis claims that opening the weight room before or after school entitles him to extra compensation, overseeing the weight room is exactly the type of additional duty likely contemplated and included within the supplement Pettis already receives.
Similarly, while claims that his work on the multipurpose field and exterior of the weight room were “maintenance” issues outside of his regular job duties, this is far from clear. District leaders have expressed a firm belief that such activities are regularly undertaken by as either part of their job or as part of their additional supplemental pay.
The report noted that the Leon County Schools policies lacks clear job descriptions for the positions or roles that outline specific expected duties.
Without additional information, the report makes no conclusions as to whether the claimed duties are appropriate for extra duty hourly pay—especially in light of Burgess’s broad discretion.
The record speaks for itself in regards to Coach Pettis. He is not a very good coach questionable integrity highly overpaid. Much of the same has been displayed by Burgess not a very good leader questionable integrity highly overpaid.. I regret that my children went to that school, and had to deal with that administration ran by Burgess and his protectors. He is a pompous windbag and his ego precedes him. Chiles would be better served without either of them.
The Chiles Football Coach SUCKS!!!
Hmmm… I would bet my left kidney that this was part of a deal Pettis made to keep his own A$$ out of deeper trouble than he is already in. He sold out Joe Burgess. Joe does things honorably. But then again this is Leon County Schools and I bet Joe’s arm was twisted by the Bell’s to accommodate Pettis!
As a former Chiles parent- I was extremely frustrated at the way they insisted kids take AP classes and 100% discouraged (and repeatedly said my kid was not “allowed”) to dual enroll because my student was a “successful AP scholar”- this while other schools in town were actively assisting their students get dual enrollment credits. At that time I knew it came down to money- now I’m incredibly annoyed to discover how some of that money is used.
All this said- why is it that anything bad that happens at Chiles is NEWS while when bad stuff- really bad stuff- goes down at Leon we don’t hear about it?
Former player, I disagree. As a family member of a former player that did play, Kp is downright awful. He has built a culture of meanness, where coaches and players are hateful to each other. He lies to players and parents. He is a joke. I’m glad you had a good experience though.
Chiles Player- it is his responsibility when he says he is doing all of that to actually earn the extra money. He said that. Another lie. Also, the boosters bought all the snacks and drinks.
My son is a two year starter, the program is a joke, as are his coaching and motivational skills. I volunteered, I go to parent meetings, dealt with the “used car salesman” pitch every single time. One of the largest schools in the county, yet there is maybe 30 kids on the team, and that is only because they move up half the JV kids to make it look like we have kids
It seems as if the parents of the kids who don’t play will never rest. Kevin Pettis puts in countless hours to help develop players not just on the field but off the field as well. He is always going above and beyond to help each and every single player become as successful as possible. There aren’t any parents in the weight room/ locker room to see what they claim is happening. Every player is treated with respect. Just because your children aren’t playing doesn’t mean you should slander his name. Instead of being keyboard warriors you all should be making sure your kids are practicing so they get to touch the field instead of the bench.
Do you want this man coaching your kids?
Joe Burgess hired this man to work with children.
Tallahassee Reports, please find out why he was asked to leave Crestview too….$$$
This needs further investigation and attention from our Leon County School Board. Our boys quit this program in October 2019 when Kevin Pettis was ejected from a varsity football game for cussing out the referees on the field in front of the entire audience. We were embarrassed and did not want our kids playing for an unethical man who we found out online had been arrested several times. He earned a 5 game suspension for that behavior and he was very proud, boasting in the locker room afterwards, while Joe Burgess and Mike Eto defended him, helped him get an appeal and gave him bonus pay! This smells of corruption. Families don’t speak up more because this administration gets revenge in passive aggressive ways: gives kids bad schedules, bad parking spaces, on and on… anything they can do within their limits to make whistleblowers miserable, so most just transfer to other schools. Numbers don’t lie. The biggest school in town has the least number of kids playing football. And every other sport at Chiles wins championships!
One more reason to get rid of athletics in schoos. Time and money would be better spent on vocational training .
Karen Hoffman “Coach”Pettis is 19-19 in 4 years
2 playoff appearances 1 earned 1 given (COVID)
Only 2 wins came from teams with a winning record at time of game
Coach Pettis is PROFANE and abusive to his players. His son also works at Chiles, primarily monitoring his cell phone. Burgess is a caring and honest administrator, but if you have “coach” before your name at Chiles you have a free pass.
How does what happened at Chilies compare to the other high schools? Their record may be more appalling. Hummm. You may be surprised!
You don’t sound very neighborly, Ann Coates. I’ll bet you don’t have very much fun either…
Have they won any games?
I hate this town! You should all be ashamed of yourselves!
Southern Culture at its finest — this is a big deal because it is when this town peaks.
The goal is college, keep your head down and work hard. If your child is successful, this drama, and that’s all it ever is, will be completely irrelevant in even 5 years’ time. However, I would bet since most parents were “born and raised” here and never left, and also see that as some sort of accomplishment, no wonder you all are so concerned to this level of detail. Al Bundy glory days!
Let’s say we solve this problem. Then what? You all honestly believe another southern swamp creature won’t try and get his? You really think its an abberant few individuals, and not an overall reflection on the morality of the people here?
I have news for you, outside and beyond the front of your nose, there is a whole world; in fact, it is laughing at you.
To the players that are commenting. I applaud your parents for keeping there opinions and what they know, to themselves about what really happened during your time on the team. A lot of things you mention that your Coach does, was actually done by the boosters. Your coach is given a budget every year and even with that, he still cried broke and the boosters paid and probably still pay for your travel. The boosters have pulled your coach out of a lot of situations financially. So no it’s not your responsibility…
Who is governing his budget expenses. Who thinks it’s acceptable for a team to have more than two uniforms. Who takes 15 coaches to a training and expect the boosters to pay for your golf and drinks….Chiles from my understanding has about 10 combination uniforms.
He does fundraising, where does this money go?
And if he was hired because he was such a winning coach, I hope JB feels like a dummy, cause he hasn’t come through yet.
Wait a minute….yall are saying that a child died under Pettis supervision and the top A rated school in our capital city hired him and the administration did not know about it. Maybe it’s time to clean house! Coach, AD, Principal, Super. How is this guy coaching?
Corrupt mess! What’s new this is just another NE snap shot of the web of lies and deceit. Do not be fooled!!! Tallahassee has been completely infiltrated with grabbing hands and zero moral compass. You can’t trust anyone in a power position, not here.
So it seems our county school system is as corrupt as our other local govt we all see on the news everyday. The FBI said years ago while investigating that Tallahassee was one of the most corrupt places they have ever seen. There have been so many other shameful incidents that have occurred at Chiles and other schools with discipline being slaps on the wrist or just playing musical chairs with staff positions. It could be mishandling funds, sexual relationships among staff, you name it. Any other normal business and there would be terminations. This is not Pettis’s first infraction, maybe not Burgess’s either who knows. Rocky has mishandled alot. WHERE IS OUR LEADERSHIP? When is the school board going to stand up and put kids first? It’s all corrupt they all cover for each other on incidents until someone is the sacrificial lamb. Let’s face it the job duties listed below are really what would be expected as routine duties, its a bunch of made up stuff to make it look like extra work. Not to mention the poor kid that died in Sebastian under Pettis that was unknown to county admin. There was also allegations of mishandling thousands of football funds at Crestview when Pettis was coach there that no one knew about. Chiles and Leon County must do better.
Please tell me why my submission from yesterday, “Policies and procedures…what the” was not used. Considering the crap I am reading above. Thanks.
As an educator, this bothers me because I have to pay for my own supplies for students, yet this administrator found money to pay a loosing football coach extra when academic teachers get nothing. We are supposed to be focused on teaching and learning in schools. Sound like there is a lot of money issues unaccounted for at Chiles. All the football money needs to be audited. My nephew family spent hours cleaning the fieldhouse, concessions and working boosters jobs, the coach did not do those things he said but he got special treatment and their boy got nothing. Burgess is unfit to serve the children of Leon County and has very bad judgement. Bad judgement and bad decisions, lack of supervision, lack of child care are the norm at Chiles under Burgess. Look up last year–basketball coaches, rape on campus during school. This has to stop. These are not role models for children, they are criminals. Do something LCSB school board, you should have investigated when the parents brought you these issues months ago. And now Chiles is spending $30K on football locker room lockers–who is over seeing the constant misuse of money? Kids have to pay $50 to park their car at Chiles, where does that money go? This Auntie wants to know! Keep reporting so we can get the truth!
At the discretion of the principal shift funds around to replace the AP funds and move on. If the coach cannot work at this salary level have him move on. Stop the drama… Make it stop. The principal does not deserve a two-week suspension. There was no embezzlement.
“Without additional information, the report makes no conclusions as to whether the claimed duties are appropriate for extra duty hourly pay—especially in light of Burgess’s broad discretion.”
… end of story
“Chiles parent” I hope you understand it isn’t the coaches job to take care of the field or locker rooms. He uses none of that. If the locker room and surrounding areas get in bad shape it’s because of us the players. Don’t put the blame on our coach when it’s our fault. We should do a better job taking care of our environment.
Taking money that is strictly for the Advanced Placement Program and using it to enhance someone’s Salary……… isn’t that considered Embezzlement ?
If Pettis had been properly “vetted”, maybe this wouldn’t be happening. But JB didn’t and here we are! The program deserve better! And I’m sure the majority of the Timberwolves family is embarrassed by this article and hopefully, better attention will be paid to Pettis and the program. And parents concerns are addressed, instead of being swept under the rug!
When will the witch hunt end? Speaking as a former Chiles High student and member of the football team, I can guarantee that Coach Pettis does everything to help. Buying snacks and water for players and mulch and mulching the field with a small lawn mower, that is beyond what’s asks of him. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. No parent can handle their kid being yelled at anymore and it shows. If Pettis goes you’ll doom Chiles back to an age where we are laughed at and labeled as the school you guys are trying to make it to be. I would have never been able to be as successful as I am or get into college if it wasn’t for the help of Pettis or Burgess. If there is a negative comment on this page of a Chiles parent who’s son plays football it is because he isn’t playing and you’re not happy about it. Otherwise, go one by one, to each player and ask them of a time that Coach Pettis or Principle Burgess went out of there way to help them. You will be astounded at the answers you get.
Thanks Dad and I understand your POV no disrespect intended on you and your family. Its the voters who keep elected leftists who I am trying to annoy and hopefully inspire them to take a moment and think what voting the leftist into office results in.
1) Is not the article about possible misuse of AP funding or possibly, a negligent and dishonest high school football coach.
2) Is the article about Rocky or Republicans or Democrats or white or black.
3) I don’t know too much about football, but I’m commenting because I CURRENTLY have two teenage boys in high school on high school football teams.
4) At least from what I read (and I thought relevant to point out, to give perspective about possible negligence) is that, in the middle of summer, in South Florida, that he (Pettis) should have definitely taken the football team’s ice bucket.
4) what is Whiplash asking us to check for ourselves. As far as I’m concerned, if my kid died on a football filed, at a national guard fort, from heatstroke when the football team ice bucket could have saved his life; then I’d never hire that coach.
5) I’d also comment that whoever hired him, erred in hiring him and this should be investigated.
6) Why is someone trying to politicize and bring racial idiosyncrasies to an article that has got nothing to do with that.
There would be no appetite to hear anything whatsoever about Pettis good or bad true or false if Rocky had been a Republican.
Everyone would be so focused on how bad the White Republican Raciest Rocky treated the innocent Black Burgess that Pettis would not even be discussed. Y’all know it is the truth.
So your White Democrat Rocky gets a pass because we need a good white Democrat to oversee the plantation. Y’all dont need to be mad at me y’all need to check yourselves.
Here’s another article from treasure coast where a child died during football practice.
“ and why Pettis, despite bringing heavy football equipment such as blocking sleds, didn’t bring the school’s portable ice bath, are among questions raised by Shogran’s attorney…….” https://www.google.com/amp/s/usatodayhss.com/2017/william-shogran-football-player-death-sebastian-river-lawsuit/amp
Steve, it is odd that a financial audit of Pettis and football funds were one of the items requested months ago by those
” concerned parents”. Burgess and Chiles did everything possible to discredit all of those claims. Now we see why. Shows you that there is truth to all of the crooked things that are bad for the players going on at Chiles. Pettis is a bad guy, he ” moved on ” from most of his coaching stops after several years once he was figured out. There were issues at every stop that Burgess did not even know about when he made the quick hire as the Tall Dem article stated. Maybe parents should question things a little more.
A rounding error meant to keep your focus off the real theft.
Operative phrase: “ While noting that school officials have broad discretion how to use the funds…”
This guy is dishonest. He gets fired a lot or asked to move on, Sebastian High School fired him less than a year after he was hired. He’s also aggressive towards the kids he “coaches”
FYI – Pettis was at Sebastian High School for more than 3 years. https://www.tallahassee.com/story/sports/preps/2017/02/25/chiles-hires-sebastian-rivers-pettis-football-coach/98379004/
Pettis never took care of the fields. He wasn’t even at school half the time. He isn’t being honest. A parent took many photos of the horrible conditions of the fields and area around the locker room and shared it with the administration. There should be a record of that somewhere.
All this said Rocky falsified information to the FBI… No penalty for Rocky.. talk about double standards. Resign Rocky. Oh, and about your hit list was Burgess on it? Why no investigation into Billy Epting and my oh my you let your buddy Sarah off the hook, viciously ran people out of town while you promoted Kathleen Rodgers and Scott Hansen as payoff for intimidating school employees during the election.